Cancer: Last year I received a letter from BreastCheck setting up an appointment. BreastCheck is Ireland’s National Breast Screening Programme. Diagnosed with breast cancer and still undergoing treatment (operation, chemotherapy radiation and Herceptin infusion) leads me to an exploration of the advantages of screening. Chapter 9


canisgallicus

My education about cancer came early in life.  I grew up in a rural dispensary practice, a large Victorian house, with no central heating, on 5 acres with out-houses where workmen used to live to tend to the horses in the days before cars.  I arrived at Belper in 1963 at age 5 years and a few weeks later my brother Shane was born.  The house was in three sections, the back section which had its own avenue, the middle section and the front section which also had its own avenue.  Belper had a gatehouse which was called the dispensary which was a two roomed house which was only used on a Monday and Thursday morning for routine dispensary patients.  In those days, there were limits to transport, many people had no access to cars.

Ireland in the 1960’s, 1970’s was becoming more prosperous so one moved from having a…

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